In response to the post “A Fatal Flaw,” and the subsequent comments, a reader writes:
“I agree with Cain on the “Every Marine a Rifleman” concept. You can build an elite organization around just such a hedgehog concept. So the question for us as educators is, “What is our rifle?”
I have given it a lot of thought and I believe the answer is, “Instruction.”
If instruction is our rifle, then “Every Educator an Instructor,” works. You can substitute other words; I tried curriculum, teacher, leader, and others, but none of them captured the actual essence of our business like “instruction.”
Instruction is to an educator what a rifle is to a Marine. When push comes to shove, it is the skillful use of the rifle (and maybe the bayonet, for emphasis) where a Marine actually does the work of being a Marine. For us, it is the skill with instruction (no bayonet needed) where educators do the work of education.
For those who understand, there is no other military command that carries the absolute weight of “Fix Bayonets.” It rings loud and clear. It is elegant in its simplicity, and is an example of perfect communication. There can be no misunderstanding the intent of the leader. I wish we had an equivalent in our profession.”
Upon brief reflection, I think the closest we get to “Fix Bayonets” is “Focus on the Academically Fragile.”
If “Every Adult a Teacher,” and “Instruction is Our Rifle,” then the performance of our most academically fragile students is the best indicator of our skills and success.
Think. Work. Achieve.